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So, I'm considering joining a game that is rather limited to help a friend get some DM experience. It is SRD only, no templates or the like, so there are many constraints.

I tend to play rather creatively, so I've decided to be a Grig, which is a Tiny Fey. For humor purposes as well as actual application, I would LOVE to get a permanent Reduce Person down to Diminutive.

That said, the problem here is that Reduce Person is for humanoids only. That leads me to two questions, both keeping in mind the no-template and SRD-only restrictions:

  • 1) Can I somehow either gain the humanoid type, or better still be treated as a humanoid for the purpose of the spell (even if just long enough to get it cast)?
  • 2) OR...is there another way to drop a size without issue?
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  • \$\begingroup\$ What class are you playing? \$\endgroup\$
    – Miniman
    Dec 14, 2017 at 2:02
  • \$\begingroup\$ Undecided as of yet. Just picked out the race. I'm open to anything SRD. I know Psychic Warriors have the Compression power at lvl 1, but it's short-term, not a permanent solution. \$\endgroup\$
    – Alphaeus
    Dec 14, 2017 at 2:04
  • \$\begingroup\$ The friend who wants DM experience, is he newish to D&D? \$\endgroup\$ Dec 14, 2017 at 4:54
  • \$\begingroup\$ He's not new to DnD per se, but it's been a long time for him since he last did much (aside from another campaign he's doing with me that I DM). \$\endgroup\$
    – Alphaeus
    Dec 14, 2017 at 18:47

2 Answers 2

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The 1st-level psionic power compression is a self-only size-reducing power that has no creature type restrictions. It is literally the only core ability that will reduce a grig’s size. It is only natively available to psychic warriors,1 but other manifesters can learn it with the Expanded Knowledge once they have manifester level 3rd and the ability to manifest 2nd-level powers (since Expanded Knowledge can only learn powers at least a level below your highest).

The LA +3 of grigs is a problem for them becoming any kind of magic or psionic character, but they do have +2 Wisdom and +4 Charisma, which are fairly beneficial to psychic warrior and wilder, respectively. Psychic warriors also make a pretty decent dip in general, thanks to their bonus fighter-or-psionic feats at 1st and 2nd. Wilders are... honestly, pretty bad. Even with +4 Charisma, I would probably go psion over wilder. You could also consider the war mind prestige class, which uses the psychic warrior power list, but the BAB +3 and 8 ranks of Knowledge (psionics) mean you won’t be able to qualify until ECL 8th, which is pretty harsh.

Ultimately, my recommendation is psychic warrior, either as a 1-or-2-level dip, or as a focus.

  • If you focus on psychic warrior, going single-classed works just fine. Alternatively, the slayer prestige class is pretty solid for a psychic warrior if you want more BAB, and even with LA +3 and the lost manifesting level at slayer 1st, you do just barely manage to reach the psychic warrior’s 6th-level powers at 20th.

  • If you decide psychic warrior is only a dip for you, cleric is a pretty good class to pair it with. The bonus feats could also help a bard out, though a core-only bard is pretty starved for solid options.

  • Psion is a valid idea here; LA +3 hurts you relative to a full-level psion, but you still end up with more and higher-level powers, and more power points, than you would as a psychic warrior. A telepath seems pretty appropriate to a grig, what with the magic song and everything, but an egoist might fit for someone who is going to use a lot of Psychometabolism powers like compression. Again, slayer can be applied, but in this case it does prevent 9th-level powers (at 20th, which may very well not matter to you). Alternatively, thrallherd exists and may be fitting. May also be creepy (as in, it definitely will be if you aren’t careful to avoid it), and a huge headache for the DM, though.

  • If you really want to leverage that Charisma, a wildadin seems like the best approach: take 2 levels of paladin for divine grace, then go with wilder. Possibly slayer here too—you’ve already given up 5 manifesting levels between LA +3 and paladin 2nd, so you might as well be good at something else.


  1. And lurks, from Complete Psionic, but that class is unavailable to you and really bad anyway.
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  • \$\begingroup\$ From my reading, Psychic Warrior is definitely the way to go. The DM needs someone that can be good at melee, and the fixed-damage-die attacks of the Psychic Warrior pair well with a Diminutive creature. The DM is running transparency...I'll see if I can get him to allow me to use Permanency on Compression (as if it was Reduce Person). \$\endgroup\$
    – Alphaeus
    Dec 14, 2017 at 2:41
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Alphaeus The psionic version of permanency is incarnate, and does not include compression. I don’t know that there’s necessarily a problem allowing it, but just for full disclosure. \$\endgroup\$
    – KRyan
    Dec 14, 2017 at 2:43
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    \$\begingroup\$ @Alphaeus Oh also, uh, LA +3 is going to make melee dicey as anything. That is going to mean your hp and saves are really low for your ECL. You’ll be damnably hard to hit, but that won’t matter for most spells. Plus at that size, melee means entering enemies’ space in order to attack, giving everyone a free attack of opportunity on you before you can even attempt to attack. \$\endgroup\$
    – KRyan
    Dec 14, 2017 at 2:46
  • \$\begingroup\$ To a certain extent, I'm deliberately gimping myself. I'm many times over the most experienced person there aside from a true DnD old-timer that I'm replacing. The other players are PHB standard, minimally optimized, and not necessarily played to their strengths consistently. Same goes for the DM's encounters. This build is more for a bit of fun on my part while filling a gap in the party rather than full optimization, per se. {PS -- for some reason I can't tag you.} \$\endgroup\$
    – Alphaeus
    Dec 14, 2017 at 2:59
  • \$\begingroup\$ @Alphaeus Comments on someone’s own question/answer are auto-tagged, so the system doesn’t let you tag redundantly (saving you characters/allowing you to tag someone else). Anyway, while I get what you mean, ultimately the way LA is underpowered can cause a DM more problems—it becomes difficult to challenge the party equally, particularly if the DM doesn’t want to kill you (and/or doesn’t want to kill you anticlimactically with some random critical by goblin #523). Personally I don’t allow LA in my games because I don’t like dealing with it as a DM. Food for thought. \$\endgroup\$
    – KRyan
    Dec 14, 2017 at 4:45
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It's not a problem if your friend is new to DMing, but if your friend is also new to 3.5 you probably shouldn't try the following (on account of the mechanisms by which it works are somewhat involved, though the rules background is sound and the overall effects are rather tame given the investment). That said:

A scroll of polymorph any object costs a reasonable 3,000 gp. Via such a scroll, you can become an ordinary object (including obtaining a nonability in each of Int, Wis, and Cha).

While an ordinary object, you can be subjected to shrink item by another caster, who can subsequently subject the shrink item spell to permanency, expending 1,500 XP, rendering that effect permanent. Such casting services cost 8050 gp for permanency and 330 gp for shrink item, assuming both are cast by the same 11th level caster (that CL being required for the permanency effect).

In total, all spells involved sum to 11380 gp.

20 minutes or an hour after your transformation into a pebble occurs, you change back into a grig, but are still subject to the permanent shrink item spell. Only the caster you employed to cast the spell in the first place can employ the spell's shrinking, regrowing, and turning into harmless cloth abilities on you, but the spell does last forever so as long as you're small, you'll stay small. If the effect is dispelled, you'll need to go through the whole process for a replacement.

Shrink Item is more potent than most size changing effects, reducing your size by four categories. This results in a Grig whose size is Fine Minus Two, and who may be made of cloth at the caster of the shrink item spell's whim.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ While this is true RAW, this does not sound like an appropriate shenanigan to pull on a new DM... \$\endgroup\$
    – KRyan
    Dec 14, 2017 at 4:47
  • \$\begingroup\$ Eh, I dunno that I'd go that far. An appropriate warning seems sufficient. It's a neat trick. \$\endgroup\$
    – KRyan
    Dec 14, 2017 at 5:20
  • \$\begingroup\$ I will definitely be using this in the future! That said, it might be a little mean to do this to him, since designing an encounter that could appropriately threaten a creature of that size would be difficult. I would have stellar dex and AC, be as close to invisible as you can get, etc. With some reach-adjusting feats I could end up being that one fly you can't kill, except it's a psionics user, warrior, and has 10 foot reach..... Awesome idea, though! \$\endgroup\$
    – Alphaeus
    Dec 14, 2017 at 13:18
  • \$\begingroup\$ Would the creature "be returned to normal composition and size merely by tossing [it] onto any solid surface"? Or, because the creature isn't technically an object anymore, would it no longer be subject to that part of the spell's description? \$\endgroup\$ Dec 14, 2017 at 14:26
  • \$\begingroup\$ @HeyICanChan No, for as the spell is permanent the size changing abilities can be performed an indefinite number of times "but only by the original caster". Yes if the one doing the tossing is the original caster of shrink item. \$\endgroup\$ Dec 14, 2017 at 19:34

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